If used well, email marketing remains an effective tool for most businesses: 8 guidelines to develop a perfect email marketing strategy.
Despite the growing predominance of Social Media, email marketing remains one of the most effective marketing tools for the store as well as for most businesses. It is in fact an excellent channel to keep in touch with customers, but how can it be used to increase sales? Here is a brief guide to find out how to do it.
We assume that each of your clients has at least one e-mail address. An e-mail account is, in general, like a diamond: forever. People can change house and physical address, can change phone number but, in principle, once it has an e-mail address continues to use it for life. It is therefore the most reliable contact system there is.
And it is the best way to create and maintain a relationship with the customer, because, if used in the right way, can help you in many aspects useful for your business …
- Increase Sales
- Optimize the conversions obtained from your contacts
- Reach new customers
- Increase the engagement of your brand
- Retain customers
8 tips to create a perfect email marketing strategy
Here are 8 tips to create a perfect email marketing strategy. The important thing, however, is to have a clear understanding of the marketing objectives that you want to achieve. At that point, you can start thinking about these key points …
1) Define the right tone of voice
What should be the perception of your business by customers? Serious and set, informal, authoritarian, captivating?
Emails allow you to set a tone that your customers can immediately recognize and identify. Pay close attention to this crucial aspect.
2) Get customers’ trust
People are careful about how and where they spend their money, and they need security and reliability. Each of us receives dozens of emails every day, but how many are read or even just open? You cannot allow your emails to end up in the spam folder, being first of all well aware of respecting privacy and not underestimating legal obligations …
- Entrust exclusively to an opt-in email marketing. Customers must decide to leave their data knowing how you will use them.
- Simplify the procedures for revoking the subscription to the mailing list. The customer has the right to change his mind. Show him that you are aware of it and that he respects his choice.
- Describe and explain in the clearest possible way what benefits the registration will entail. A discount coupon? An exclusive content? The possibility to access services or reserved offers?
- Give customers the opportunity to choose the type of information and the frequency with which they will receive it. They will decide according to their interests, and they will appreciate to have this possibility of control.
- Do not overdo the frequency of sending your emails. One thing is to create and maintain the right engagement, another is boring. Most users decide to unsubscribe from a newsletter due to too many emails received. Allowing customers to choose and possibly change the frequency of your communications will reduce in advance the possibility that they decide to permanently refuse your newsletter.
3) Offer interesting content
You must know the public you are addressing to, and be sure to send only and exclusively communications that may interest you. It may be useful to segment your mailing list, subdividing it into smaller and more targeted lists. In this way your newsletters will be more targeted and, therefore, more effective.
4) Integrate emails with other media
Email marketing is more effective if it is combined with other communication media, such as a regularly updated website – perhaps with a blog section – and your social media channels.
By coordinating the different platforms and using promotion systems (Facebook Ads, Google Ads …) you can increase the effectiveness of your email marketing.
5) Measure and optimize
Emails can be tracked and monitored, you can easily see if and when they are received and opened. Using tools like Google Analytics or Facebook Analytics you can understand how your customers react to your emails, what actions they perform and with which time. All this information will help you to detail and further optimize your strategy.
6) Track each email
It is essential to understand which emails work and which do not. Here are the metrics you need to use to understand it …
- Number of emails sent;
- Number of emails delivered;
- Percentage of emails delivered;
- Number of undelivered emails;
- Number of emails delivered but not yet open;
- Number of emails delivered and open;
- Percentage of open emails;
- Number of clicks obtained;
- Percentage of clicks obtained (CTR);
- Number of unsubscription requests;
7) Ask your customers for feedback
Asking your customers to give you their feedback will make them feel more involved and will help you optimize your marketing strategy.
8) Analyze the results and act accordingly
What are the audiences from which you get the best results? Which object of the email and which Call To Action were most successful? What are the times of the day and the days of the week when the public is more responsive? Change your strategy based on the answers to these questions to increase conversions of your business.
Once your strategy is defined and optimized, it’s time to take care of the practical details.
How to make sure that your emails are read
If you limit yourself to sending emails without thinking carefully about their content, you risk your audience ignoring them or canceling them without even opening them. Make sure you do not neglect any of these rules to send quality emails …
Personalize your newsletters
Your emails must include the exact name of each individual recipient. Any email marketing software allows you to do this. This will help you reassure your customers that it is a communication dedicated specifically to them and will show that you are also attentive to small but important details.
Pamper your best customers
Keep a sort of ranking of the most loyal and profitable customers for your business, and reward them with personalized offers or by presenting exclusively some new products to test their reaction.
Target your emails based on behavior
Customize your communication based on demographics and the habits of your target audience. Age, gender, lifestyle, interests are all very important aspects to consider. To profile your audience even more effectively, you can use RFM analysis (Recency, Frequency, Monetary), a statistical technique that predicts segmentation of your audience, which allows you to associate a score to customers based on three parameters:
- Recency: Is the metric that tells you when is the last time the user has purchased on your site;
- Frequency: Tells you how often the user buys;
- Monetary: What is the average user spend during the reference period?
The best customers are of course those with higher RFM scores.
Set the best item for your email and check it with an A / B test
The object is the bait by which the user will decide whether or not to open your email. It should not exceed 60 characters and should contain some keywords such as “yours”, “for you”, “exclusive”, “extra”, “limited time”, just to mention some of the most used. Almost all DEM clients allow you to test the effectiveness of your email subject using A / B test and providing you with the percentages of open emails sent.
Use an informal and friendly language
Always check that the contents are written in correct Italian and do not contain typos. The form, in a communication based on reading, is as important as the substance. Avoid the slang forms and the excess of technicalities, use short sentences that go straight to the point.
Do not use a language too “marketing” and not be too insistent in requesting a CTA, many people can find it repelling. Prefer softer formulas to push an action, for example using instead of a BUY NOW button! A softer formula like Discover more.
Use the calendar to choose when to send your emails
You can use the calendar to find some strategic dates, days or periods particularly relevant for your promotional communications. Christmas, Valentine’s Day, the periods of traditional seasonal sales or Black Friday are absolutely unmissable moments for any type of commercial activity. But many retailers also schedule their emails on certain fixed dates, like the 11th of each month, when customers have just received their salaries and may be more likely to make purchases.
Make sure your content is readable and usable even on mobile devices
By now everyone receives and regularly consult e-mails from a mobile device.
You must always be sure that the layout of your emails is perfectly responsive and adaptable to any type of screen, and that they are any landing page and optin-page to which refer your Call To Action. The tracking information obtained from Google or Facebook Analytics, and the statistical reports obtained from your Email Marketing Client (MailUp, MailChimp, etc.) will give you a complete overview of the devices used by your customers.
Consider email marketing as an integral part of your business
DEM activity should be considered as a regular and constant activity, and not something that can be done occasionally. Here are some ways to use Direct Email Marketing successfully …
- When a customer places an order, send him a confirmation email, where he will update him on the status and mode of the shipment. You can also take advantage of it to report to him some products that, depending on the purchase made, might interest him (e.g. he bought a technical mountain jacket? Suggested trekking shoes).
- If your customer data includes your date of birth, you can send emails corresponding to their birthday, including a coupon or special offer. The date on which the customer registered on your site or the anniversary of his first purchase can also be used for targeted and personalized emails.
- If you notice that one of your customers has had one or more items in the shopping cart for some time but has not yet finalized the purchase, send them an email that encourages them to complete the transaction. Reporting that the availability of the item is limited or offering a discounted price will help you finish the order.
- Email marketing works best when both the sender and the recipient gain a mutual benefit. As a sender, your goal is to increase sales and consequently profits, and the best way to do it and offer customers what they really want. Send well-written and well-presented emails, targeted on a careful profiling of your audience and that are able to convey valuable content. Discounts, special offers and personalized purchase proposals will encourage your customers to buy from your site.
If set up and managed in the right way, email marketing will help you convert visits into orders, retain customers and gain new ones, using an easy-to-manage tool and, usually for small and medium-sized businesses, free.